One Team’s Playoff Game is Another’s Super Bowl?

Super star wideout, Justin Jefferson (#18) takes off against Packers’ outstanding cornerback, Jaire Alexander (#23).

Like in Week 1, and essentially every matchup since Brett Favre took over as starting quarterback for the Packers, the Vikings have treated every game against Green Bay like its the Super Bowl. They have good reason, they’ve never won one, so they try to get themselves to experience it, much like Brewer fans (the baseball equivalent of the Minnesota Vikings).

Minnesota now has some extra motivation to win on Sunday. The fact they could knock their division rial out of the postseason wasn’t enough for Jaire Alexander. He decided to give them a bunch more material by stating that Justin Jefferson’s 9 grabs, 184 yard, and 2 touchdown performance was a “fluke.” Not a recipe for success.

Min D.(rank)vs.GB Off.(rank)
Rush120.819123.114
Pass281.532219.517
Total402.331342.616
Pts24.928 20.918
 Min Off.GB D.
Rush94.528 144.427
Pass259.96192.43
Total354.512336.817
Pts25.27 22.317
 
T/O     
Takeaways238th20T-13th
Giveaways17T-6th20T-19th
Diff.65th 0T-13th

There’s one matchup that sticks out, like last week, and it’s the awfulness of Minnesota’s defense. While they’re the 6th passing offense and 7th scoring offense, their defense is atrocious. They’re last against the pass, 2nd-last in total yards, and 28th in points allowed. Over their last 4 games, Green Bay has averaged 27.8 points per game. Meanwhile Minnesota has surrendered 30+ in four of their last 7. A lot of that has come from turnovers, meaning Green Bay will have to have a similar game to last week if they’d like to keep their season alive.

While their record is tied for the 2nd-best in the entire league, the Vikings rank 10th in point differential, sitting at +5. They’re closest ranked to the New York Jets, which better resembles their true strength. With that being said, the Packers are still 18th in the NFL with a -21 differential, putting them in line with teams like Cleveland, New Orleans, and Carolina – losing teams.

There are 3 weapons Green Bay needs to be aware and somehow slow down, if possible, if they want to win.

Momentum is a funny thing, and it’s tough to track, but easy to feel. The Vikings have essentially had momentum all year, throughout the season, whilst Green Bay has had it for a few weeks now, it’s come to a head, and the biggest rival has a chance to end your season – this will feel like a playoff game, for both teams.

Minnesota seems to be the more complete team, yet their defense is awful, which combined with Kirk Cousins will be their eventual demise – will Green Bay have enough to pull it out?

Vikings 23
Packers 20 (-3)

Season: 7-8
Overall: 87-50

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